I was shooting the breeze with a prominent Douglas County personality the other day, jawing about this thing and that, when something in our conversation, I don’t remember what, prompted me to consider, as I seem to more and more recently, how lucky I am.
I was born male, Caucasian, in America, of Italian descent, to loving, rational parents who valued education; all of which have made my life much easier than it would have otherwise been and none of which I “earned”. It was a birthright.
There have been a lot of other lucky breaks along the way, but some, most, all have involved factors besides total dumb luck.
With all the stuff coming down on us lately, especially if the Covid-19 things has effected us more personally than just filling up the television news, we might tend to put aside just how lucky everyone who reads this article is, just being here.
Problems abound in all our lives, sometimes making this trip look pretty bleak, and I might be overwhelmed by whatever those problems are, but take that problem or constellation of problems and carry them on your back to, say, Afghanistan or Somalia of France – all places anyone with any sense would avoid. Avoid that is unless you were born there.
Sure, everyone adjusts to their birth situation in one way or another but you have to admit such adjustment takes a lot less energy here in America.
I suppose I could have added a few other dumb luck birth blessings, none of which I received, like being born beautiful or rich or with an unfailing sense of direction and so on. Each of those original unearned blessing certainly give those of us lucky enough to receive them a step up in life. Being born here, however, a boon only those who have lived elsewhere recognize as brightly, is something all of us natives ought to be grateful for occasionally. Even if you did not do as well in the birth lottery as I did, perhaps not born of Italian descent for example, but still got dropped in the United States of America as neonate, you pretty well got it made in the shade.
The next time you see or hear one of us complaining about some problem we are telling the world about, remind us how lucky we are having that problem here, not over there. And we are here, at least most of us, because we lucked out and were born here.
Maybe not as lucky as someone who was born here male, Caucasian, and to good Italian parents, but still pretty doggone lucky.